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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Mrs Farmer and I are trying to come up with some plans for saving lots and lots of money... mostly so that we can buy a nice small holding or small farm in wales. Wales is currently winning over Taz, or orkney, because of Mrs farmers' large welsh family.

Sooner or later, the amount that diving is costing me is going to come under scrutiny. With that in mind, I wondered what the YD massive thought about where a 'bare minimum' might be, in terms of dives per week/month/year.

At present, I'm diving roughly every other weekend, with between 2 and 4 dives per trip. Even if you're talking about muddy puddles, by the time you factor in fuel costs, entry, fills, etc you're looking at about £30 per day for diving in stoney (20 mins away) or more like £60 per day for ndac once you factor fuel in. So, choosing the cheapest option, a weekend at stoney, twice a month, would be £120 per month.

I know that's not a lot of money for most of you, but there we are.

So, could I get away with diving once every other month? would my skills become very very rusty over that amount of time? is one days diving per month better than a 3 day trip every few months?

Has anyone been a similar boat and had to do this for a year or so? Clearly I'd rather be diving every weekend... but I have to be realistic.

very interested in your thoughts :)

Adam
 

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I know that's not a lot of money for most of you, but there we are.
Au contraire Missuer Farmeur

Of course it is a lot of money to most of us, don't be fooled into thinking this is a middle class passtime, I know some believe it to be but that is down to the fact they are middle class and move in such circles.

120 per month is plenty.

Our annual club fee is 250 PA and that includes free boat and compressor use....that is the benefit of living on the coast though, I would hate to see my diving bill if I didn't get it all inclusive.

When I lived in the lake district our diving was mainly free...in the lakes.. have a look around your area there will be places where you don't have to pay....
 

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To be "dived up" requires 100 dives a year.

To continue to be a diver requires 10 dives a year.

You need to decide how far down the sliding scale you can afford to be before you're not comfortable in your gear, in the water, and happy to do any dive you've ever done in the past.

This year I will probably do somewhere between 50 and 75 dives. I am in no way dived up at all. Nothing is easy. My gear is unfamiliar, I have to think about buoyancy, trim, carting my gear about, getting geared up, deco, where everybody is - when dived up all of these things are automatic.

Note that single tank diving with a BCD in a wetsuit is easy enough to get dived up in about 50 dives a year, but it is all relative - some need more, nobody I know needs less.

In order to move from diving at current level, staying dived up, to getting any better and improving performance, you need to do 100+ dives a year. Otherwise you are building a house on the sand, and we know what happened to that.

Somebody, who does about 50 dives a year, and reckons they are dived up, is about to come along and argue with this post. I am ok with that, but they should bear in mind that my definition of dived up may be different to theirs - I am sure they aren't a danger to themselves, and can happily go for a nice dive regularly, I am talking about being able to hand on heart know you are at the top of your game, and everything that comes with it.

Digs.
 

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No reason why diving once a month won't be enough to keep you dive-fit. It would be different if you were a noobie taking several weeks off after qualifying OW,but you should have a reservoir of talent/skills by now. Why not look for a small-holding with a decent waterhole on it.....I'd suggest Vivian but I think it's in a national park:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Au contraire Missuer Farmeur

Of course it is a lot of money to most of us, don't be fooled into thinking this is a middle class passtime, I know some believe it to be but that is down to the fact they are middle class and move in such circles.

120 per month is plenty.

Our annual club fee is 250 PA and that includes free boat and compressor use....that is the benefit of living on the coast though, I would hate to see my diving bill if I didn't get it all inclusive.

When I lived in the lake district our diving was mainly free...in the lakes.. have a look around your area there will be places where you don't have to pay....
swithland is probably free, never been there yet. dotty is free place of choice, but obv lots and lots of fuel to get there again. then I've got to factor in my return to diving, and lack of regular buddies. This means diving where there are other people around.

might be worth some more investigation though, there has to be more lakes locally other than swith, stoney, and dost.

club fees which including diving and fees would be amazing. the last club i tried (years ago), was luec. they only had use of a 2m pool, had no compressor, and obviously dive trips were extra.

I did speak to hinckley SAC, a SAC at ibstock, and one at l'boro back in september. I should probably get back in touch with them and ask them about compressors.

anyway, this isn't going to be a 'woe is me' thread, but thanks BTS... something else to think about.


digs, sounds sensible enough. made all the more ridiculous by my recent changes in diving direction, etc.
 

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swithland is probably free, never been there yet. dotty is free place of choice, but obv lots and lots of fuel to get there again. then I've got to factor in my return to diving, and lack of regular buddies. This means diving where there are other people around.

might be worth some more investigation though, there has to be more lakes locally other than swith, stoney, and dost.

club fees which including diving and fees would be amazing. the last club i tried (years ago), was luec. they only had use of a 2m pool, had no compressor, and obviously dive trips were extra.

I did speak to hinckley SAC, a SAC at ibstock, and one at l'boro back in september. I should probably get back in touch with them and ask them about compressors.

anyway, this isn't going to be a 'woe is me' thread, but thanks BTS... something else to think about.


digs, sounds sensible enough. made all the more ridiculous by my recent changes in diving direction, etc.
You have to pay to go to Swithland. It's split between the group, but I think the total is about £100. You also need to be part of a dive club, and possibly need to be BSAC to get permission to dive due to insurance etc.

Air fills aren't the expensive bit of dive trips. Personally, the big cost is fuel, then accommodation, then the boat, then food, then gas.

Digs.
 

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I would say that frequency is more important than total number of dives per year. I believe a diver is more 'experienced' if he does let's say 20 dives throughout the year rather than 1 week dive trip off the red sea.

I use to average 40-50 dives a year but now my life is changing where my dives are suffering , less time & less money. I doubt I can go on a dive holiday this year but I try to go diving locally whenever I can. For me a local dive is get up early - drive 30min, dive, have some tapas and then be back home for lunch.

You have to balance your lifestyle and incorporate the diving as you can, but don't get an obsession with numbers.

As to your post it also depends on the diving you do. For me it's single cylinder and up to 40m. However if I am to do a deep dive and havn't been in the water for some weeks I 'll get some dives before hand.
 

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I reckon once a week will keep you in tune. Shore diving is obviously the cheapest option but you need a variety of diving to be dived up, completing dives at all levels of your certification. I know tec divers who won't shore dive as it is 'below them', yet is a great way to practice buoyancy in the shallows. I complete hundreds of dives a year but not enough trimix or CCR dives to be dived up in that type of diving. I did intend to do more CCR dives this year but need new cells and we know that's a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You have to pay to go to Swithland. It's split between the group, but I think the total is about £100. You also need to be part of a dive club, and possibly need to be BSAC to get permission to dive due to insurance etc.

Air fills aren't the expensive bit of dive trips. Personally, the big cost is fuel, then accommodation, then the boat, then food, then gas.

Digs.
didn't realise that about swith - cheers.... i shall strike it from the list.

yes, you're right about the gas, i just object to paying nearly £6 to fill my twins... that's a whole other argument.

if stoney was free entry, and the only cost me a fill, it would indeed be a lot cheaper. in terms of sea diving, fuel and accom do seem to be the biggies.
 

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as a single tank diver / instructor / someone who has worked in diving for 4 years and been diving overall for 11 years, I find it hard to answer the question.

How often would you have to drive to be drived up? After a year in Mallorca, I came home and got in my car and hit the motorway. Still coped.

I can't afford the gear or the gasses to be a technical diver, even if I actually got my kicks doing "expensive" complex dives.

I think club diving has a lot to offer if you want to go diving a lot, practice in the pool, update your skills and get free or cheap boat places. If you move to Wales, try to get near the sea and join a club.

A lot depends on whether you keep your diving simple or not. Keep it shallower than 30 - 35 metres and you can dive cheaply on air and with a club and stay in practice and "dived up".

Go technichal and it will cost you a lot and you will have to practice a lot to stay unbent and alive. I don't care what anyone says, it will cost you a lot to have and maintain lots of technical gear and use trimix.

For me, personally, to remain "dived up", for the simple diving I do, (wrecks, scallops, photos and holidays) - I "need" about 50 dives a year to feel comfortable in the water. But I also know my kit well and know my limits and know how to stay safe.

Others will have different ideas though.
 

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The smell of freshly turned delrin is more powerfu
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I am in no way dived up at all. Nothing is easy. My gear is unfamiliar, I have to think about buoyancy, trim, carting my gear about, getting geared up, deco, where everybody is - when dived up all of these things are automatic.
When did Digger start making sence !

but that bit about gear being unfamiliar and changing to automatic is a real good answer


David
 

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Dived up is really based on how you feel underwater, i dive all year round generally but in the sea, no puddles, but in the winter that may only be 1 a month, sometimes several blown out months. If you have a good foundation these gaps are not an issue, but i generally will still build up after a long gap, having said that a build up 1st dive for me will probably be around 30m.

Over a year i'd say 40-50 to be classed as dived up, but any gap of more than about 2 months build up again. But it depends how comfy you are after the gap. I'm on 6 weeks post Op rest, return dive will be somewhere around 30-35ish meters but i will limit the deco to 30 min ;) some will think that crazy others will do similar, its really what you are comfortable with :)

Why do cold short and maybe less enjoyable winter dives? If you are gonna do 20-30 a year why no skip the winter and build up in April for a summer blitz ;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Swithland is, IIRC, £145 and you have to be a BSAC club to dive there. And it's not somewhere to go to "practice".

If you want to stay dived up, teach.
been there, done that. :(

I have mixed feelings about the teaching thing now. for a start, it doesn't help me with the money aspect anyway, as you still have to pay to dive as a bsac instructor.

I followed a pretty common bsac progression - work up to DL ticket, then go on the OWIC and pursue the instructor tickets... next would have been AD, then AI. I think that's a pretty 'standard' route. It does mean (IMHO), that you have to be fully immersed in every facet of club politics though... that's not a turn-on.
 

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The smell of freshly turned delrin is more powerfu
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I know tec divers who won't shore dive as it is 'below them'
hang on... this is a nice friendly thread sofar :)
I am goning to dive all teccy like down at selsy life boat station on friday I migh get 5.5 meters if I am lucky.. does this mean I am not a tec diver..
LOL
 

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I reckon you need to be in the water 2-3 times a month all year round, i hate quarries but they are a necessary evil if you want to start your next diving season at a reasonable place.

It also depends really on what level of diving you want to be doing as to how regulalry you need to be in the water, if your bimbling on a reef in 10-15m you can get away with being alot less dived up than if you want to be 40m+ a deco diving.

diving season being March to October IMO.
 

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Why worry? Just do what you can, as and when you can afford it whilst times are hard and then get stuck again into it big time once you can afford it. There's no magic number, it's what YOU are comfortable with. Maybe it means you just do slightly less ambitious diving for a while? It's just a bit of fun, it's not the SAS.

I didn't dive for 10 years then just eased myself back into it as things got financially easier. Even now, I reckon I'd only do 30~40 dives a year (roughly one day of 2 dives a fortnight minus weather and other blowouts), so according to some, I'm never up to it, which is odd because even after a 6-month health related layoff this time last year, my buoyancy, trim, air consumption, navigation, boat handling etc were still pretty well spot on and my arse and elbow were exactly where I'd left them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
In response to many people:

I think I'd be happy with 35m as my yearly max.... the only dive I know I want to do below that is the Lucy... she's in 40m, but was a fab dive when I did her years ago.

I'm not looking for massively complex, techie, or deep dives. My recent GUE experiences have thrown a new light on some things, but tbh, it doesn't change much. They're very conservative with their depths allowances, etc, and I have most of the kit already. I'm certainly not going to go out and buy lots of holycon stuff.

I can see how living on the coast would save me a shed load of money... sadly, i live in midlands.
 

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some will think that crazy others will do similar, its really what you are comfortable with :)
For some of us all three of those statements are true :D

Strange for me that when advising others I suggest one thing, but in reality I often do something different. I will quite happily chuck on a twinset and go do a 40m dive after a 6 month break. I would never advise anybody to do the same thing.

Digs.
 
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